The Biggest Predictor of Canine Health

Socially connected dogs live longer, study finds.


Maybe money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy health. In looking over survey data collected on more than 21,000 dogs, researchers working on a nationwide initiative called the Dog Aging Project found that a higher household income was associated with better health for the dog in the home. No surprise there. More money means pets receive better medical care. What was surprising was that the company of other dogs and even companion animals of other species, such as cats, had a positive health effect that was five times greater than the effect of family income. A vibrant canine social life even had a bigger impact than house-
hold stability.

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